CSO LtCmdr Raqiin sh'Hruvek

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IT'S BEEN A LONG ROAD

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Character Name: Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Shawna F » Wed Nov 23, 2016 3:24 am

Stop trying to make fetch happen, A!
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Einar S » Wed Nov 23, 2016 7:55 pm

Shawna F wrote:Stop trying to make fetch happen, A!


:D
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Sophie Wakeling » Thu Nov 24, 2016 8:48 pm

Hahahahaha!
Shawna, It's not your fault she's, like, in love with you or something

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IT'S BEEN A LONG ROAD

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Character Name: Raqiin sh'Hruvek

w/ captain sumner

Postby Shawna F » Sun Nov 27, 2016 4:06 pm

Stardate 11612.01 (hot damn is our next mission really on the first of December, where did November go??)

Champagne wasn't always for the lightest of weights, but she'd had heavier before, and with the way the evening was going and at Mac's insistence, it didn't seem like the worst idea to drink it while technically still more or less kinda sorta on duty. Needless to say, Raqiin and Mac polished off the bottle in due time. Having already eaten not long beforehand helped stave anything else off, but the news about Tony's loss (having put 2 and 2 and a couple more 2s together) and the disaster of the dinner had her head reeling.

A conversation with Hitch could wait. Maybe the instructions weren't so clear. Maybe the men thought they could quietly finish their conversation since they were talking to one another. At the end of the day, he was her responsibility, and she'd failed to take appropriate measures. But what Raqiin knew was that she wasn't the only one failing in that regard. So. One thing at a time. She couldn't do anything about the disruption of the ensigns, and she couldn't do anything about Tony, but she could try and talk to the captain. Getting her to listen, as Jameson had joked about when the Riani were first coming aboard, would be another item entirely.

Still in her whites, though her jacket was unzipped, and deftly avoiding any roving bands of Mothers, Raqiin stopped at Sumner's quarters and took a few steadying breaths. They didn't seem to work, but she rang the door chime anyway.

There was only silence for a long moment, which then turned into two. A third threatened to make the whole thing seem awkward when there was a sudden thump against the door.

"Come in!" came Sara's invitation. Raqiin was met with a wall of sound as the doors slid open, the Captain's quarters in disarray with various PADDs and trinkets littering the floor. Sara's dress uniform was in tatters on the other side of the room, leaving her in a black athletic top. Like her brother, Sara sported a collection of tattoos. Hers consisted of a weave of brightly colored flowers and vines that seemed to cover the left half of her body. If Raqiin looked closely, she might even make out the sprites and pixies flitting between the flowers.

"Stop playback," Sara called, mercifully bringing the cacophony to an end. She paced back and forth, and gave the impression she'd been doing this for a while. "I know," she said by way of greeting. An empty bottle hung limply at her side.

Raqiin thought what she'd find was bad. This was worse. The wave of sound didn't help matters, feeling as though it was pushing her back physically. And even when that stopped, when she stepped in to let the door slide shut, the mix of...everything was enough to let her know that this wasn't good. That the talk with Princess Ria had not gone well. She hung by the door so as to not get in the way of the pacing, or step in any mess.

"You know. Great, then I guess I don't have to do my half of the conversation, do I. I might want to hear your half, though."

"Nothing," she muttered ruefully. "Not one word. Nothing about Twissel, or the ion storm. Nothing about Tony. Nothing about Henry. Not one whisper of the truth, or a single iota of accountability, and now I'm expected to babysit a literal fucking princess and accept as valid a system of oppression and discrimination that contradicts everything Starfleet and the Federation supposedly stand for, but of course we know first hand that's all a giant load of bullshit."

Sara looked to the bottle in her hand and moved to take a drink, only to find it empty. It looked for a moment like she might hurl the bottle at the wall, but instead just tossed it on the couch.

"And now I'm out of bourbon," she finished.

That wasn't quite the direction Raqiin thought that was going to go in. And then the worry started to hit. Henry left after getting disillusioned with Starfleet. Who was to say Sara wouldn't get burnt out the same way? "I'm sure they're working on it. It can't be easy to work around whatever security measures are in place to keep exactly what they're trying to do from happening, all while away from the kind of protection we could afford them by being on a ship." But she really, really did not want to think too much more about Tony tonight.

With a sigh, the science officer daintily moved around the chaos of the room, depositing her jacket on the arm of the couch--she always did think the whites drowned her out--before likewise depositing herself next to the empty bottle. "So yes. In the meantime, you have to actually do your job, to the best of your ability. Which means maybe not getting up in the morning with a hangover before you make amends with the Princess and her retinue."

Sara only shook her head, a deeply cynical grin curling her lips.

"'And her retinue,'" she echoed. "Like hell."

"Look, I get it, assaulting a member of the crew is absolutely unacceptable. That's not in question. But this entire situation hasn't exactly been handled with the best of care from the start." She spread her pale arms to encompass said entire situation. "You've been distracted and ornery from the get-go, and let's face it, you've never been very subtle about that sort of thing, and now it's impacting your work."

"You don't say," replied Sara. Her pacing slowed somewhat, her hands resting on her hips as she mulled Raqiin's critique.

"Bantree should have known better than to hand me a diplomatic mission after that shit show," she vented. "This whole assignment has been one long nightmare. Whoever thought it would be funny to put an under-30 stick jockey in a Captain's chair is having a nice, long laugh at the expense of hundreds of thousands of lives, and I get to sit here staring in horror at the blood on my hands, weakly flailing against forces far, far beyond my control. And in the middle of all of that, Elsbeth Bantree hands me this backwards-ass group of inbred dick-haters as if she hadn't just stolen the last dregs of my faith in Starfleet."

"I didn't want this. I didn't want any of this. And now I'm so buried in it I can't even run from it."

By now, a steady stream of hot, angry tears had made their way down Sara's cheeks as she only now began to understand just how far down the rabbit hole she had gone.

One of the things about being an empath was having to weather emotional torrents that sometimes not even the people feeling them were fully aware of. Though psych had been a path pressed on her in the Academy, especially given her more passive ways, it just didn't do it for Raqiin. Still. She felt, whether it was true or not, the need to help. Because Captain Sumner more and more often was in need of help.

She was now extra thankful that the music got turned off, or she'd be blown away by the desperate emotional waves coming off. "Sara." Neither of them were, right now, on duty, and now was not the time to treat her as a captain, but as an equal. "What you have to put up with, what you do as the captain of a ship? It's incredible. And terrifying. I couldn't do it. I'd have buckled long before now. Maybe this was a mistake. Maybe you could have, should have turned down a promotion, a ship. Maybe Bantree gave you this as a breather rather than a breaking point, or maybe she decided to try and humiliate you. And maybe you're exactly where you're supposed to be for someone to make a difference. But if you need to leave..."

It was something she'd suggested more or less before, when things were bad, when it was all really, really bad. When she'd seen and felt Sara in a hole so deep it was hard to see the light. And she'd bounced back before. "If you need to let Anya take the lead on this while you sort things out, I don't think there'd be any shame in that."

Sara combed a hand through her hair and balled it into a fist for a moment as she tried to gather herself. She thought back to many similar conversations she'd had with Captain Rome as he'd struggled to navigate the many, many tribulations of the Scimitar and her crew. She had done her best to counsel him, to remind him of the strength he'd lost sight of at times.

She now had a greater appreciation for the struggles he'd endured. She also counted herself extraordinary lucky to have an officer like Raqiin sh'Hruvek who was both unafraid to call her out on her bullshit and kind enough to validate her frustrations.

Once the wave had passed, Sara joined Raqiin and the bottle on the couch and wiped away the tears.

"I think we've both had enough of people leaving us," she finally offered. "As for the retinue... I think I'll decide on that in the morning. If I feel I can't get my shit together, I'll hand off to Anya."

Raqiin let out a small breath and slid closer, moving the bottle aside, just so she could lay a gentle hand on Sara's shoulder. She wasn't entirely sure how offering up a hug might go. "Okay. That sounds like a good plan. I'll...see about sending everyone one more reminder with a little more detail about how things should be going down in a polite and respectful manner before I sleep tonight." She scoffed lightly. "If I sleep tonight. Mac and I had a conversation. About Tony. So you can imagine how well that went, and I'm starting to see where an appreciation of kanar might come from."

Sara placed a hand atop Raqiin's and gave it an appreciative squeeze. In truth, she was somewhat relieved to switch her thoughts back to her crew, and she had to wonder whether that was the idea, or if she'd simply been a little too self-centered of late.

"How's Mac holding up? How are you for that matter?" she asked.

"Well, I'm sure if something within reach had been stronger and had more burn than champagne, I'm sure she would've grabbed it. Was pretty upset at the idea of getting all dressed up and looking fancy for nothing. I don't know that she...I don't know. Tony leaving hit her pretty hard." The diversion was good in some ways. Distract from some of the issues at hand. But this direction didn't seem that great, either.

"I know it's not my place to--it's not any of my business, but did Tony...tell you why he left? Because Mac was surprised he didn't say anything to me. So. I know now. And I can absolutely see why he didn't say anything to me. So that's...a thing."

Sara gave Raqiin a sympathetic smile.

"Truth be told, I think he might have said even less to me about it," she answered. "But I keep close tabs on the Hyperion. I know about Niamh. That's why I didn't try too hard to reel him in, I guess. I wish he didn't get wrapped up in all this. It's the last thing he needs."

"I didn't even know. I figured something personal had happened, on top of everything else, but... I just hope he finds a way to come back. That the boys will get everything out there, and we'll weather that storm when it comes, and then he can just be back here. And you."

Raqiin turned on the couch so she was fully facing Sara. "You and your brother are so much alike sometimes it's weird. He left for the same reasons that are making you question everything you stand for. He left because he didn't feel like he could trust Starfleet anymore, that he wasn't making a difference. And maybe you feel that way, too, but I don't. I think the only way we're going to improve how things are is by changing it from the inside. We might not always see eye to eye, but that doesn't mean I want you to leave like Henry and Tony, and Captain Griffiths."

Sara met Raqiin's gaze and held it. She wasn't wrong about her and Henry's similarities. They shared a lot of the same morals, as one might expect if siblings who essentially raised each other. But not everything was the same.

"I'm not going anywhere," she promised. "They'll have to drag me off this ship kicking and screaming. Which they may do, but not today."

"...Good. I mean, hopefully they won't when all of this blows up in our faces, but--good all the same." Maybe it was childish of her, but she didn't see any reason to have to lose anyone else because of the job. "So um, do we have a contingency plan in place? How long do we wait before we decide something's gone wrong with the plan?"

Sara took a deep, steadying breath, feeling like a decent amount of the weight on her shoulders had been lifted, or at least readjusted.

"I'll give Henry a call sometime in the next few days," she said. "I can't address things directly, but he'll give me some sign if something went wrong. If it did, we can discuss our options then."

"Okay. So long as there's something. Part of me doesn't mind the wait, because once it hits...it's going to be chaos. But the longer the wait, the more I worry something's happened."

So that was that settled. They could fret about it all they pleased, but it would do neither of them any good. It was a waiting game at this point. Raqiin squared her shoulders and huffed out a breath. "In the meantime, the ship still needs running, and the job needs done. How angry was the princess?"

Sara gave a slight shrug.

"Not as much as I was," she offered. "It might be salvageable, but it'll take some work. I can do it, I just gotta compartmentalize."

"I'm not much of a diplomat. Exhibit A, scientist, not ambassador. Exhibit B, the fact that I was kind of terrified to come here but just tipsy enough to give it a go. I just...this is gonna sound awful, but I feel like this shouldn't be as hard as it's making out to be. Is it really the gender thing that upsets you so much?" Apart from everything else that was upsetting Sara, obviously.

Sara gave a tired sigh and rubbed her eyes a bit, unsure whether to get into it.

"In the relatively short time I've been here, I have put this crew through deeper and darker levels of hell," she explained. "I have asked for your trust when you had little reason to give it. My orders have resulted in multiple crew deaths. How could I, in good conscience, submit you all to the indignity of not being able to socialize with fellow crew just because they have the wrong parts?"

"I don't care a whole lot for moral relativism, you know? Oppression isn't ok just because it's other people doing it. Genocide doesn't become acceptable just because it's in a people's culture to do so."

"But... I will accommodate them as much as I can."

"Moral relativism makes the Federation go 'round. You think it all sucks. You know what? I think it sucks, too. Maybe when everything is nice and calm, and you two are on better speaking terms, you can have a thorough discussion and maybe change her mind, or plant the ideas that might change things down the line in their history for the overall better. But it's not your responsibility right now to try and make sweeping changes to a culture we barely know. Your responsibility...is to get these people where they're going. And to do it with as little incident as possible."

Raqiin shrugged. "Should we be bending over backwards, conforming to their ways while they watch just so they aren't offended? Should they accept that we do things differently and just need to get over their discomfort? I can't answer that. And I think if you asked five different captains, you'd get five different responses. The history of all our peoples have records of what happens when we stumble into a culture whose practices we think are wrong and then tell them that to their faces. Spoiler alert: it doesn't usually end well.

"But what might happen if they are treated with as much respect as we can give them, is that later on they might end up petitioning to join the Federation. And then with time and patience, they might find that their ways don't work for them as a species, or a culture, or as a culture as part of a greater organization. I don't think it's too much to ask to show them some basic respect of their ways, like bowing or speaking in the right order, or indulging in their rituals during state functions. I don't think it's too much to ask that they show us basic respect, even grudgingly like the Tzenkethi queen did, even if she wasn't happy about it, by letting us do our jobs without disruption. This would have been easier if they stayed on a ship of theirs and only came on for a visit, but it's too late to fix first impressions now.

"I don't envy you, and I wouldn't want to be in your shoes. All I want to do is learn about these people, this inbred hereditary disease of theirs, and their creatures, so maybe we could find some kind of common ground and not punch each other or gravely insult one another."

Sara rubbed her temples in slow circles, once more feeling like she was on a precipice. She was sure she and Raqiin could debate the subject for hours. They'd both make fine points, they could consume a bottle of not-bourbon, and maybe emerge from the whole thing with an improved sense of enlightenment. But Sara simply didn't have the energy or the patience.

"I'm too tired for this debate," she sighed. "Just... I promise I will do better, okay?"

Raqiin leaned back on the couch, her head tilted to the ceiling with eyes closed. "Okay." Her fingers played with her hair, undoing her braid. "Sorry to just...word vomit at your face. Apparently anxiety and high strung feelings make me wordy lately, I'm finding. Be better if that came out at more appropriate times, though."

"Don't apologize," bade Sara, flashing her Chief Science Officer a wan smile. "90% of it was extremely helpful. I'm just tired, and need to clean up my quarters and possibly fall into a coma."

"Maybe don't do that last one. Might cause some problems. Cleaning is only important if you actually plan on having someone over, honestly, though I'm told the act of cleaning might help clear the mind, too. Either way...should probably leave you to it, huh?" Captain's got a cozy couch, though. Reluctantly, Raqiin got up with a stretch and started to wander to the door--only to come trotting back over to grab her forgotten jacket.

"Seriously, why are they white--hey, uh. Are you going to need a new dress uniform? Or are you gonna throw regs to the wind and make something new? You do have a certain fashion taste that is...not this."

Sara looked up at Raqiin, a brow raised in thought.

"Might put me in a better mood, if nothing else," she mused, before standing to see her guest out. "This was kinda nice, actually. You should swing by my quarters a little drunk more often."

"I don't even feel it--maybe I should swing by actually drunk. Or I should swing by and get drunk with you. And then with our luck, something catastrophic will happen in the middle of the night, and we'll be too--uh, there's a human expression about wind. Something in the wind. Too drunk to do anything useful, is what I mean." Raqiin paused in thought by the door. "You know it's okay to talk to people about what you're feeling, right? You don't have to get into classified stuff, just...it's okay to talk."

Sara smiled and a conceding nod, letting her gaze drop to the floor.

"I'll realize that eventually," she offered. "I've just always been the one people talked to. Maybe it tricked me into thinking I was wise enough to solve everything myself."

"This might come as a surprise, but despite how much I talk, I'm not actually very good at talking." She could talk about dictating a letter to Tony as the only way to really talk about her feelings with him leaving, and her foot, and the fear that she's going to inadvertently get her crewmates killed, but hey, not very good at talking. "Counselors exist for a reason. So do friends."

Sara gave Raqiin a warm grin, perhaps just a glimpse of her old self.

"I'm glad to count you as a friend, Raqiin. You're bright and funny and you were willing to try kanar, so you're pretty neat in my book."

Raqiin's cheeks managed to get some color in them from a blush, brushing some of her loose hair behind an ear. "You're kinder than you know. And you don't give up anything without a fight." The latter wasn't always a compliment, but this time it was. "I'll let you dry up. Goodnight, Sara."

"You have a good one as well."
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
XO LtCmdr Vikram Baudin - USS Sentinel NCC-79088 / S.T.A.R. Taskforce Sigma

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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Gunther Vermeulen » Sun Nov 27, 2016 5:01 pm

Wow, amazing interaction between you two. Really really great stuff!
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Einar S » Sun Nov 27, 2016 7:11 pm

This just made a horrible train ride turn amazing pretty fast
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Sophie Wakeling » Mon Nov 28, 2016 8:46 pm

handing over to Anya...who isn't in mission for the next 2 weeks! oops!

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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Shawna F » Wed Dec 07, 2016 4:55 am

Stardate 11211.22

Zeller Moore insisted they get ice cream. It was getting to be chilly, in San Francisco terms, but the local ice cream parlor they met up at was open all year round, a popular spot for Academy students. In a way, cold confections made her think of home. Their friendship had remained steady over the course of the year, the Valentine's incident long forgotten, but Raqiin had instincts just as well as anyone else, and on occasion as of late, she had been getting a vibe off him. It wasn't even anything her empath ability could detect. He smiled just the same, laughed just the same, called her Snow just the same, and yet something had also changed in some nigh perceptible way. Maybe it was the way he seemed to want to hang out with her more than usual, or how far into her space he'd lean when unnecessary, but it wasn't like none of it was unwelcome from a friend.

They talked the same. School, where they hoped they'd get assigned upon graduating, other friends, annoying teachers, the latest movies. He had a feeling of such serenity about him that it took even her by surprise. At one point she elbowed him as they walked back to the dorms, asking what had him in such a good mood. He just kept on smiling around a bite of his cone and said good times with good people on a good day made life worth loving. She couldn't fault him for that.

What she could fault him for came later, hanging out watching some tv and playing some games in the dorm lounge, when his hand rested on her thigh. It was such an innocuous thing, but no accident, the way it sat there with purpose. He said nothing, and neither did she, continuing to focus on the game with their fellow students, but with a frown tugging at the corners of her lips. When they were done with that, he followed her to her room, and, with no immediate work that needed doing, she let him into her room--thankfully her roommate was also there, politely greeting, and going back to her screen. Though Raqiin noticed her occasionally looking up to watch them as they talked, occasionally throwing her own opinions on the mindless chatter of increasing amounts of awkward they shared, until Raqiin finally shooed him out with a thanks for a nice time see you later bye.

Mel waited a few moments after the door closed and Raqiin deflated before crawling to the edge of her bed and raising her eyebrows. "He is so into you it's not even funny. Why didn't you tell me you guys were going on a date?"

Raqiin groaned. "Because it wasn't a date! He's just being overly friendly, that's all."

"He's giving you the goo-goo eyes."

"Is that an Earth phrase or a Centauri phrase?"

"You are the most clueless empath I know."

Raqiin groaned even louder.

***

The next day, she avoided him. They didn't share many classes now that they had diverged mostly from the core Academy classes, but whenever she came across him, she pretended not to notice, or made up an excuse to go somewhere else. But there was only so often that could happen before he caught up with her, curls flying.

"Hey! Snow, c'mon, do we have a problem? Hold up!"

She uncomfortably tucked some hair behind an ear and turned to him, arms crossed over her. "What?"

"You kinda took off there. What's up?" He spread his hands. "Aaaare we not cool or something?"

"I mean...look, last night was kind of...weird. And I just wasn't really comfortable about it?"

"Weird? What do you mean?"

"I don't know, you were kind of clingy, and you were touching me in a way that just wasn't cool? I didn't say anything because I...didn't know what to say. It was just weird, and I don't want this to get weird."

Zel took a few steps closer. "Hey, c'mon, Snow...I wasn't being weird, but I'm sorry if you weren't cool about it. I just thought we were having a nice date."

She blinked. "It wasn't a date. We went for ice cream. Like two friends."

"Whaaat, it was totally a date. We're closer than just friends, aren't we?" He reached out and stroked her hair. "I have had the biggest crush on you for a while now, and I just thought--I guess I thought it was obvious what I was going for when I asked you out."

She took a step back. "You didn't ask me out, you wanted to hang out like friends getting a snack and playing some games to blow off some steam. What's gotten into you?" He started to speak, but she held up a hand. "Whatever it is, you better get it back out of you. We're not more than friends. We are just friends. And if you wanted to ask me out, you should've just asked me out instead of playing it off. I like you, Zel? I really do. But don't make this weird. Just don't touch me, okay? I gotta get to class; I'll see you whenever." With that, she turned and stalked away, leaving the tumultuous emotions of Zel behind her. She could, if digging, sense an infatuation, but there were other troubling emotions flitting by that she couldn't identify without stopping to think about it, to really look. She didn't want to look. If he got over his crush, then that'll be better, they can go back to normal.

That's it. It would be fine. A little time apart would be good for them both. And then it would work out and not...be weird.
CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek - USS Bremen NCC-12428
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby Einar S » Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:16 am

that was just fantastic. I was glued to the screen.

Great stuff Shawnster!
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Re: CSO Lt Raqiin sh'Hruvek

Postby C. J. Short » Thu Dec 08, 2016 1:46 am

This would hit all of Sara's psychoanalysis buttons. Good stuff, Shawna :)
"As long as I have a want, I have a reason for living. Satisfaction is death." - George Bernard Shaw, Overruled

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